Casual Conversation

Whenever I see a towering dead tree, its branches leafless and broken, they remind me of Saguaro cactus.  This giant dead pine still towers among the trees that surround it.

After walking through her woods, Fate and I met our neighbor who was gardening.   We stood on the dirt road only close enough so we could hear each other as we talked.  How ordinary it was to have a casual, unhurried conversation with her face to face.

As strange as things still seem it amazes me how quickly we humans adapt.  A few weeks and I almost feel like I’m getting used to living this way.

Last week when I  saw Kelly in the Co-op I cried.  Today I was joking about having to do all the food shopping instead of Jon.

I’m sure if we were in a city where the virus was quickly spreading it would be different.  Stories from people trickle in about friends or relatives that  live somewhere else and have the virus or died of it.

But here, from what I’ve heard, the hospitals are eerily quiet.   I keep getting the feeling that the tide is going further and further out and I’m waiting for it to come in, unsure if it will be a tidal wave or not.

So I try to be more thoughtful about how I spend my time.  To remember what’s really important.  Aware that these may be the calm days before the storm.

But I think I’m getting used to that feeling of unknowing too. My life isn’t on hold, I continue to live it as fully as I can even in these strange and uncertain times.

Corona Kimono April 7, 2020

My drawing today

I just finished my drawing for my Corona Kimono for today.  The idea to start with the stone wall came to me this morning as I woke up. Then I saw The Lace Tree, still standing.

Julz, my bellydancing teacher has faithfully posted videos for us to practice and dance to and yesteday she did a half-hour Zilling lesson (Zills are the finger cymbals we wear and play while dancing). So I put three zills in this drawing. One is missing for what we miss by not being able to zill and dance together.

The snail mug holds the tea or Kombucha I bring to my studio in the morning and the crocus is spring.

Working on my Corona Kimono



Through The Lace Tree

Jon and I just started walking in our neighbor’s woods again after not going there for about a year.  So I was a little sad but not surprised when I saw the Lace Tree had fallen down.

This burly hollow stump was the inspiration for the fabric painting I made a few years ago called Lace Tree Goddess.  

Today I got down on the ground and took this photo through the hollow stump. This beautiful old dead tree still inspires me.

The Cheeky Goldfinch

The bird came to the feeder as I was stitching the first entry on my Corona Kimono Calendar.  He gobbled the last of the birdseed, stared at me brazenly then went back to eating looking up at me from time to time.

I took it as a good sign.

I couldn’t find my bird book so I asked my friend  Jackie what kind of bird it was.  She thought it was a young male Goldfinch, (not just because he was gobbling up the food) because it looks like he’s still molting.  I’d seen some yellow birds at the feed in the past couple of weeks, but none this bright and cheeky.

I’m going to miss not seeing the birds more this year than I usually do.  They bring me many moments of joy seeing them out my studio window each time they flit onto the feeder and off again.

So I sat quietly, the kimono waiting patiently on my sewing machine, and watched the goldfinch until he flew away.


Corona Kimono Calendar

first “entry” in my Corona Kimono

I stitched my first entry on my Corona Kimono Calendar this morning.  I started with the mask at the bottom then added on to it.   Then the sheep grazing, one of the last birds at the feeder for the season, our gate that works really well since I fixed it, and Emily’s Happy Beet, since she gave me the idea to stitch on the kimono.

I also added the date and some more words that came to me.

“Low hum of menace” the title of a recent episode of  This American Life and exactly how these weeks feel to me.  And “Bear at the birdfeeder”, which, for me,  speaks to the possibility of danger.

I realized after stitching this that I probably should have started in the center of the Kimono and worked my way out to keep it from bunching up.   So I may stitch tomorrow’s entry in the middle and expand off of it. Or I may work my way up to the middle and expand from there.

Corona Kimono Calendar with its first entry.

Corona Kimono Calendar

Emily held the drawing she made with the words, “Be Your Original Self” written on it up to her computer screen so I could see it.  We were having our first video chat.  She told me she was starting to add more words to her art and this was her latest.

Then I moved my laptop so she could see the Kimono hanging on my studio wall.

I’ve had the Kimono hanging on my wall for over a month, ever since I received it from Ann.  It was given to her by a friend who died in the Aids epidemic and she’s had it all these years.  She sent it to me hoping I could use it in my art.

I wasn’t sure how to use it until I showed it to Emily and she suggested I do my free-motion stitching on it.

As soon as she said it I knew it was right.

I thought how obvious an idea it was and how I never thought of it.  Somehow it almost seemed too easy too obvious.  But then I thought of the words from Emily’s drawing.  I could not be more originally me than to free-motion stitch on the Kimono.  It’s so much what I do, who I am.

So I decided I would stitch on the Kimono every day during the virus, like marking off the days on a calendar.  Of course, I have no idea how long this will go on and how quickly I’ll “fill up” the Kimono with drawings.  But like I usually do, I’ll figure it out as I create.

I find the connection between the Aids Virus and Coronavirus poignant.

Today I pulled fine handsewn hem out of the Kimono and slipped cotton batting between the outside of the Kimono and the lining.  I need to have batting or interfacing behind the fabric to sew on it.

The back of the stitching will show up on the inside of the Kimono so I’m thinking when I’m done I may line it with another fabric.

Tomorrow I’ll do my first drawing.  I’m going to start on the bottom back and see where I go from there.

Full Moon Fiber Art